Where nature and the city meet

If you want to spruce up your yard this spring, the installation of a rain garden might be the perfect project for you and our watershed.

introduction to the alliance

The Eagle Creek Watershed Alliance (ECWA) is a broad coalition of individuals, volunteers, foundations, local organizations, utilities, county, state, and federal agencies, and universities working together to improve water quality and the environment of Eagle Creek Watershed. The ECWA, formerly the Eagle Creek Watershed Task Force, has been in existence since 1997. 

Our Mission: To utilize a holistic approach to watershed management with the ultimate goals of improving water quality, increasing public awareness of watershed water quality, and encouraging stewardship of the watershed's resources. 

The ECWA has received a 3-year grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under an assistance agreement with the Indiana Department of Environmental Management to implement the Eagle Creek Watershed Management Plan. Tasks to be completed during the grant period include: 

Eagle Creek Watershed Alliance TImeline

  • 1995-1996
  • 1997
  • 1998
  • 1999
  • 2000 & 2001
  • 2002
  • 2003
  • 2004
  • 2005
  • 2006

Due to the timing and intensity of spring rains in relation to the agricultural producers’ activities in the fields, the levels of triazines in the Eagle Creek Reservoir’s untreated water exceeded the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) drinking water quality standard for most of each year.

Spring: Indiana Farm Bureau hired a watershed coordinator to begin a watershed group to investigate water quality issues in the Eagle Creek Watershed.  Summer: while a list of stakeholders and steering committee members was being developed, a water sampling program with “in-kind” testing by the Indianapolis Water Company was initiated. Fall & Winter: regular monthly meetings of the steering committee were held and various technical subcommittees took place.  A 319 grant for funding the watershed coordinator was approved and work on the Watershed Management Plan began.

Data continued to be gathered as well as work on the management plan.  In the fall, the watershed task force, in combination with the Heartlands Group of the Indiana Sierra Club, sponsored a tour of failing septic systems in the watershed in Boone County.

Data collection and work on the management plan continued.

A 319 grant was obtained for bio-assay of 20 sites in the Eagle Creek Watershed.

A 319 grant was submitted for a DNA ribotyping study of E. coli.  This grant was also supported by funding from the Sierra Club.  Another 319 grant was submitted to begin Phase I Implementation for BMP’s in the watershed.  This grant was unsuccessful due to lack of supporting data in the watershed management plan.

The 319 grant for the ribotyping of  E. coli study was completed.  Work continued on revising the management plan to get it to support the 319 BMP grant that had been conditionally accepted.

The taskforce was unsuccessful in obtaining the 319 BMP grant.

The Eagle Creek Watershed Management Plan was completed and approved by IDEM.  The Eagle Creek Watershed Task Force expanded to become the Eagle Creek Watershed Alliance.  The Alliance applied for a 319 grant to implement the watershed management plan.

A 319 Phase 1 Implementation grant was awarded to the Alliance.  A Watershed Coordinator was hired and a steering committee and working committees were formed to carry out the tasks of the implementation grant.